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The Sermon on the Mount Essay

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Updated: Sep 28th, 2021

There are some parts of the Bible that are more deeply engrained in the minds of people than others. Top-ranked among them is the Sermon on the Mount (Bibletools.org). Comparisons have frequently been drawn between the Ten Commandments and the Sermon on the Mount. While both contain guidelines from Almighty God to His people for their salvation, they are otherwise different. The Ten Commandments are guidelines given by God, who appeared amidst clouds and thunder, in ten negative utterances that relate only to the duties of every society for its nourishment. On the other hand, the Sermon on the Mount constitutes guidelines given by God in human shape in a succinct, affirmative form designed to completely destroy evil intention rather than delaying to destroy its fruits (Mastrantonis).

There are two reasons for the paramount importance according to the Sermon on the Mount. Firstly, it is positioned close to the start of the New Testament, due to which it is perused more regularly. Secondly, it is brief and incredibly distinct teaching that forms the foundation of the Christian way of life. Clearly laying down Jesus Christ’s explanation about what Christians should be, and what they should do, the Sermon on the Mount is looked upon as being closer to Christianity’s manifesto than any other single section of the Bible (Bibletools.org). It is without doubt the most succinct and practical Christian guide to righteous living.

The practical guidelines to righteous living are contained in the initial part of the Sermon on the Mount, known as the Beatitudes (Bibletools.org). The Sermon on the Mount starts with the exhortation of “moving lyrical strains of the Beatitudes” (Mastrantonis). The Beatitudes are short elaborations on the spirit of the law, and recommendations on how to secretly and privately establish a relationship with God. They are considered as “the string of pearls” that embellishes the crowning of Christianity’s code of morality. They are independent utterances of ‘blessedness’ to shape the character of Christians. ‘Blessedness,’ a word derived from the Greek meaning ‘much more than happy,’ involves a feeling of being greatly favored by God which brings feelings of great happiness and contentment as a result (Mastrantonis).

The ten Beatitudes are as follows (Mastrantonis).

  1. “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” God confers blessedness on those individuals who are poor and live a lowly life without luxury or glamour yet never deviate from the path of righteousness. What they lack in life will be replenished tenfold by God when He welcomes them into his kingdom of heaven.
  2. “Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted.” God confers blessedness on those individuals who suffer a lot of sadness in life but steadfastly bear the sorrows while never wavering from righteousness. God, in His mercy, will provide them comfort.
  3. “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.” God confers blessedness on mild and quiet-natured people who are not led astray by their personal desires but put their faith unwaveringly in God. God will reward their steadfast faith by making them inherit the age to come.
  4. “Blessed are they who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled.” God confers blessedness on those individuals who are always eager to follow the right, moralistic path in life by worshipping God and submitting to His authority.
  5. “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.” God confers blessedness on those people who exercise compassion not only by giving alms to the poor but also by making personal sacrifices to help the needy. God, in his bountiful mercy, will reward them tenfold.
  6. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” God confers blessedness on people who are pure, chaste, sincere, and morally upright in all their thoughts and deeds. God will reward them by generating feelings of abiding companionship with Him.
  7. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.” God confers blessedness on those individuals who strive to bring peace to the world at different levels, be it between their neighbors, or their office colleagues, or between countries. God will reward them with recognition as His true children.
  8. “Blessed are they who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” God confers blessedness on those persons who, emboldened with virtues of the previous Beatitudes, are well-fortified to face cruel or unfair treatment just because they are morally upright. The divine kingdom of God will extend to their hearts.
  9. “Blessed are ye, when men say all manner of evil against you, falsely, for my sake.” God confers blessedness on all those individuals who oppose evil in His name, due to which they suffer cruel or unfair treatment by word or actions.
  10. “Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets who were before you.” The blessedness of God is something that should make Christians rejoice and be very happy not only in themselves but also in anticipation of the reward they will get by gaining entry into heaven, just as it earlier occurred to the persecuted prophets.

The disciples of Jesus Christ, who attentively listened to the Beatitudes in the Sermon of the Mount, reverently accepted them as though they were precious pearls. The teachings emboldened them with conviction and strength to spread the word of Christ all over the world, and it continues to embolden all inspired and dedicated people who immortalize Christ and the Gospel from generation to generation (Mastrantonis).

References

Mastrantonis, George Rev. “The Sermon on the Mount.” Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. 1996. Web.

Bibletools.org. 2008. Web.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "The Sermon on the Mount." September 28, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-sermon-on-the-mount/.

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